Evidence for Evolution: Fossils Flashcards

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Note: We may include questions that have multiple correct answers. It’s useful to remember specific examples to understand these concepts better.

What are fossils and where are they commonly found?

Fossils are the preserved remains of organisms, often from millions of years ago, and they are typically found in rocks.

Name one way fossils can be formed when parts of the organism have not decayed.

Fossils can be preserved in ice, as the temperature is very low, preventing decay.

How can hard body parts like bones and shells form fossils?

Hard body parts can form fossils when they are slowly replaced by minerals as they decay.

What is the significance of the fossil record?

The fossil record shows that fossils of simpler organisms are found in older rocks, while more complex organisms are found in newer rocks, supporting the idea that organisms have evolved over time.

Why are there few fossils of early soft-bodied organisms?

Soft-bodied organisms rarely form fossils because their soft tissues often decay completely, and many of the fossils that did form have been destroyed by geological activity.

What are evolutionary trees and what information do they use to show relationships?

Evolutionary trees are diagrams showing how different species are interconnected, based on information such as DNA sequences, fossil records and physical characteristics.

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